Pre-Elections, Iraqis Crave Stability

Nir Rosen interviewed by Bernard Gwertzman

The coalition led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is likely to lead in the March 7 parliamentary elections, as Iraqis look for stability and security after years of conflict, says Nir Rosen, an analyst of Iraq's political scene.

See more in Elections; Iraq; Democratization


Iraqi Politics: Uncertainty Ahead

Jane Arraf interviewed by Bernard Gwertzman

Iraqis don't blame Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for an uptick in violence, but that doesn't mean he'll prevail in March 7 parliamentary elections, says veteran Middle East correspondent Jane Arraf.

See more in Elections; Democratization; Iraq


As We Stand Down, Can They Stand Up?

Author: Max Boot
Weekly Standard

"Despite the headlines about bombings in Baghdad, the situation has improved immeasurably," writes Max Boot, referring to the better security in Iraq on his most recent trip. Nevertheless, he cautions that, "there is no room to be complacent," as there is much work yet to be done.

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Primary Sources

Quarterly Report to Congress, Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, October 2009

Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) released its twenty-third report to Congress. The October report states: "Thee next six months will see a substantial reduction in the size of the U.S. military presence in Iraq, a continuing reorganization of the U.S. Embassy's reconstruction management, and the election of a new Iraqi parliament."

See more in Iraq; Nation Building


Iraq's Worrisome Political Process

Joost Hiltermann interviewed by Bernard Gwertzman

Middle East expert Joost Hiltermann says Iraq appears headed for an uncertain, and potentially violent, political season with no clear dominant faction emerging ahead of January parliamentary elections.

See more in Iraq; Elections